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19 June, 2021

75 years of chooks

Stan Thurlow was five-years-old when he first showed birds and chooks with his father at the 1946 Goulburn show.

By Emily Middleton

Seventy-five years later, Mr Thurlow continues to exhibit his prized birds, with over 200 living in his own backyard.

“There wouldn’t have been a year [since] that I haven’t shown a chook though,” said Mr Thurlow.

For the seasoned poultry fancier, breeding and exhibiting is a hobby that takes a lot of time and care.

“It’s just what I did. I just keep showing every year.”

Mr Thurlow’s birds aren’t any ordinary fowls. They have taken years of planning and breeding according to British standards to achieve the gorgeous colours that the birds have today. One bird in particular - the Modern Game, which sports a rare spangle colour - has taken Mr Thurlow 15-years to perfect.

“You’ve got to be dedicated to it. It’s not something that you can just go out and start doing.”

Along the way, Mr Thurlow has had numerous outstanding results.

“I had some good years. I showed at the contest of champions at Penrith in 1976. I got second out of 50 birds. When I was young, they wouldn’t let me show because I had the same sort of birds that my father had, and they thought I was just using his to show. Then dad said, let’s put a stop to that. So, we started showing as Thurlow and son.”

Mr Thurlow was the chief steward of the poultry section at the Gilgandra show for 55-years. He was recognised for his efforts on 2015 when he was made a life member of the Gilgandra Show Society.

Mr Thurlow retired from that position in 2019, leaving him free to focus on his next goal: finding a mate to breed with his rare spangle-coloured Modern Game.

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